Wairarapa is getting its own TV channel.

From October 24, Freeview channel 41 will be the home of Wairarapa TV, a regional station broadcasting over Masterton, Carterton, Greytown, Featherston and Martinborough in the Wairarapa valley.

It will initially focus on tourism-targeted content, keeping it simple and low cost to run, but will also feature an hourly local news segment updated.

There will also be live Wairarapa rugby, and potentially a two-minute Wellington and Wairarapa daily weather forecast segment.


Wairarapa TV is the brainchild of Masterton entrepreneur Toby Mills, who is well-known for setting up sound and video for acts at King St Live and Golden Shears.

He said Wairarapa TV was inspired by the "amazing" growth in Tourism in Wairarapa, but also by the "corresponding lack of video available online and to visiting tourists that tell them about all the things they can do here".

"We need to celebrate our region more and this is a great opportunity to showcase some of the great things that happen here that many people never get to see."

Over time more content could be added, targeted at locals, he said.

"But by focussing on tourism we won't have high programme licensing costs and don't have to try and come up with completely unique content to schedule every day which is both hard and expensive."

The channel has the support of Wairarapa Trust House, with Chief Executive Allan Pollard seeing it as a good opportunity to "share what we get up to in Wairarapa".

"It'll be a single destination point for motels and hotels to inform their guests, and the wider community as well," he said.

"I do quite a lot of travelling and the Hawke's Bay for example has its own Hawke's Bay TV and when you go to hotels you can readily see what's available in the region.

"It'll be a single media point of contact for everyone in Wairarapa, not just tourists, but the wider community as well."

Wairarapa TV will also broadcast the Wairarapa Tui Cup club rugby finals on July 31.

Because this is before the channel's launch date, it will only be available on the internet but will be re-broadcasted once the station goes live.

This will be the first of many Wairarapa Bush Rugby broadcasts in association with Wairarapa TV.

Wairarapa Bush Rugby Union CEO Tony Hargood said Wairarapa TV was a great initiative "and we're definitely behind it".

"Wairarapa Bush rugby has been looking into enhancing its digital presence for a while and when Toby discussed with us Wairarapa TV, we just jumped at the opportunity to provide local rugby content to the channel," he said.

"In particular the club finals just stood out as a really good opportunity to showcase Wairarapa Bush Rugby, Trust House Memorial Park, and also the local initiative for TV."